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Unified Communications Week in Review: Of Risks & Rewards


October 18, 2014

It was another major week for news on the unified communications (UC) front, but this week, a particular focus developed around the risks and the rewards when it comes to putting UC to work. No technology comes without risk, but all too often, there are plenty of rewards waiting for those who put it to work properly. Thus, as the long-awaited weekend arrives, we can take a step back and consider the events of the week more fully, which we'll do right now with our Week in Review coverage!

First, we had a look at a big win for All Points Logistics, who landed a contract with NASA. The contract in question, a Solutions Enterprise Wide Procurement (SEWP) V contract reportedly valued at $20 billion, opens the door for NASA to get hands on information technology equipment, including communications, networking, audio-visual products and similar such services. So far, 41 contracts have been awarded to date as part of SEWP V, making All Points Logistics part of an elite group.

Next we had a look at text messaging and privacy therein when it comes to the mobile user. Mobile users have a variety of choices available when it comes to keeping in contact, and text messaging can offer some significant advantages, particularly over voice messaging in a crowded environment. However, not even text messaging will be useful—or even appropriate—at all times, so having other options available in the field is a worthwhile point to consider.

Global Media Services (GMS) and Acano made up the next news item, as the duo partnered up to bring GMS' line of UC products to markets in Austria, German, and Switzerland. Acano products offer up a particular advantage for those looking to bring together multiple platforms in one operation, ranging from platforms like Microsoft Lync and Skype to various telephony systems and breeds of audio / video communications tools. Acano's CoSpaces, meanwhile, help bring the conferencing capabilities together in one central place.

Then we had a look at a webinar from Carousel Industries, which put a particular focus on the value involved in using UC in a business environment. Titled “The Future of Collaboration,” the Carousel webinar called attention to Microsoft Lync 2013 as well as the SMART Room system, both of which offered particular value in terms of helping to keep users on the same page regardless of physical location. Carousel's Ed Wadbrook referred to current conditions as “...a golden age of collaboration...”, and having the necessary tools to tackle the job would prove of extreme importance long-term.

Finally, we had a look at what was most needed in the field of UC, and a study by Softchoice illustrated just what was perceived as lacking. Perhaps one of the biggest issues was how employees felt ignored when the time came to bring in new communications tools, and those who were consulted commonly felt more productive thanks to improvements in communication with colleagues. Those who felt more productive without consultation was significantly lower, however, a point that businesses should keep in mind.

That was the week that was in UC, and there was plenty going on this week. With risk and reward around in nearly equal measure, there's plenty to consider here, and our global online community was deep into the fray, bringing back all the best when it comes to risk and reward. So keep it right here next week for all the latest news from the front, and every weekend as well for our Week in Review coverage!






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